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The children’s community nursing service is a specialist team of children’s nurses and child health carers who work with children and young people aged 0 - 18 years living in Northumberland and North Tyneside who have complex medical needs. We work with children and young people whose health problems require the input of trained children’s nurses to provide their nursing care.

Access to the service

Anyone involved with a child or young person’s care (including a parent or carer), where the child has a complex health need, can refer the child on to the service.

Following referral, a children’s community nurse will contact you to arrange a mutually convenient appointment to assess your child’s nursing needs. A care plan specific to them will be agreed, where possible, with your child and yourself as their parent or carer. This plan will be reviewed and changed as required.

The service can be involved at different times throughout a child or young person’s life. This could be, for example, following a hospital admission, during a period of illness or when a course of treatment is needed.

The nature and length of a child’s care will be entirely dependent on their specific needs. Support from the service to provide nursing care may be anything from a few days to several months or until the young person reaches adulthood and is then supported by to adult services.

Your child’s care

Nursing care, advice and support is provided to children, young people and their families at home and in a variety of community settings. This allows the right care to be given in the most appropriate setting as close as possible to home. Some examples of the type of need that can be met include:
    •    Supporting children who require naso-gastric tube feeding
    •    Supporting children with a gastrostomy
    •    Supporting children with a tracheostomy
    •    Supporting oxygen dependent infants and children
    •    Supporting children who require administration of intravenous antibiotics
    •    Supporting children with the management of complex wounds
    •    Supporting children who are technology dependent

We also provide advice, support and training to other agencies and services to enable them to meet the health needs of your child or young person.

Safeguarding children

We take safeguarding very seriously and work alongside partner agencies in ensuring that children have a safe happy, healthy childhood, with the appropriate interventions which will support them into adult life.

We have a number of safeguarding arrangements in place including all staff having a CRB check prior to employment and those working with children undergoing an enhanced level of assessment, robust child protection systems including a process for following up children who miss appointments and a system for identifying children where there are safeguarding concerns, regular and ongoing safeguarding training of eligible staff.

We have designated professionals who take the lead on issues in relation to safeguarding. This comprises of one named nurse for hospital services, two named nurses for community services, a named midwife, two designated and named doctors. In addition there are nurse advisors and a children’s officer who train, support and advise staff within the organisation. The director of nursing is the executive lead for safeguarding.

You can contact the team on the following numbers:
    •    Within our hospitals - 0191 2934212
    •    In the community in North Tyneside  - 0191 2196697
    •    In the community in Northumberland  - 01670 593681

The team

Your child may see a children’s nurse and child health carer.

Contacts

If you would like to refer your child into the service please contact the team:

The service is based at the Northumberland child health centre at Wansbeck General Hospital.